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Competencies For Entry Into the Profession of Dental Hygiene

The Middlesex County College Dental Hygiene program is a competency based curriculum. Competencies describe the abilities expected of a dental hygiene graduate upon entry into the Dental Hygiene profession. Competencies combine skills, understanding, and professional values and are performed independently in realistic settings.

 

CORE COMPETENCIES (C)

 

C.1

Apply a professional code of ethics in all endeavors.

C.2

Adhere to state and federal laws, recommendations, and regulations in the provision of  dental hygiene care.

C.3

Promote patient health and wellness using critical thinking and problem solving.

C.4

Used evidence-based decision making to evaluate and incorporate emerging treatment modalities.

C.5

Perform on-going self-assessment for lifelong learning and professional growth.

C.6

Promote the profession through service activities and affiliations with professional organizations.

C.7

Provide quality assurance mechanism for health services.

C.8

Communicate effectively with individuals and groups from diverse populations.

C.9 

Provide accurate, consistent, and complete documentation for assessment, diagnosis, planning, implementation, and evaluation of dental hygiene services.

C.10

Provide care to all patients using an individualized approach that is humane, empahtetic, and caring.

 

HEALTH PROMOTION AND DISEASE PREVENTION (HP)

 

HP.1

Promote the values of oral and general health and wellness to the public and organizations withing and outside the profession.

HP.2

Respect the goals, values, beliefs, and preferences of the patient while promoting optimal oral and general health.

HP.3

Refer patients who may have a physiologic, psychological, and/or social problems for comprehensive evaluation.

HP.4

Identify individual and population risk factors and develp strategies that promote health related quality of life.

HP.5

Evaluate and utilize methods to ensure the health and safety of the patient and the dental hygienist in the delivery of dental hygiene.

 

COMMUNITY INVOLVEMENT (CM)

 

CM.1

Assess the oral health needs of the community and the resources available to facilitate access to care.

CM.2

Provide screening referral, and educational services that allow patients to access the resources of the health care system.

CM.3

Provide community oral halth services in a variety of settings.

CM.4

Evaluate the outcomes of community-based programs.

 

PATIENT CARE (PC)

 

ASSESSMENT

PC.1

Systematically collect, analyze, and record data on the general, oral, and psychosocial health status of a variety of patients.

This competency includes:

a.  Select, obtain, and interpret diagnostic information recognizing its advantages and
      limitations.
b.  Recognize predisposing and etiologic risk factors that require intervention to prevent
     disease.
c.  Obtain, review, and update a complete medical, family, social, and dental history.
d.  Recognize health conditions and medications that impact overall patient care.
e.  Identify patients at risk for a medical emergency and manage the patient care in a
     manner that prevents an emergency.
f.  Perform a comprehensive examination using clinical, radiographic, periodontal, dental
    charting, and other data collection procedures to assess the patient's needs.

DIAGNOSIS

PC.2

Utilize critical decision making skills to reach conclusions about the patient's dental hygiene needs based on all available assessment data.

This competency includes:

a.  Determine a dentaly hygiene diagnosis.
b.  Identify patient needs and significant findings that impact the delivery of dental   hygiene
     services.
c.  Obtain consultations as indicated.

PLANNING

PC.3

Collaborate with the patient, and/or other health professionals, to formulate a comprehensive dental hygiene care plan that is patient-centered and based on current scientific evidence.

This competency includes:

a.  Prioritize the care plan based on the health status and the actual and potential problems
     of the individual to facilitate optimal of health.
b.  Establish a planned sequence or care (educational, clinical, and evaluation) based on
      the dental hlygiene diagnosis; identified oral conditions; potential problems; etiologic
      and risk factors; and available treatment modalities.
c.  Establish a collaborative relationship with the patient in the planned care to include
     etiology, prognosis, and treatmetn alternatives.
d.  Make referrals to other health care professionals.
e.  Obtain the ptient's informed consent based on a thorough case presentation.

IMPLEMENTATION

PC.4

Provide specialized treatment that includes preventive and therapeutic services designed to achieve andmaintain oral health.

This competency includes:

a.  Perform dental hygiene interventions to eliminate and/or control local etiologic factors to
     prevent and control caries, periodontal disease, adn other oral conditons.
b.  Control pain and anxiety durign treatment through the use of accepted clinical and
      behavioral techniques.
c.  Provide life support measure s to manage medical emergencies in the ptient care
     environment.

EVALUATION

PC.5

Evaluate the effectiveness of the implemented clinical, preventive and educational services and modify as needed.

This competency includes:

a.  Determine the outcomes of dental hygiene intervention using indices, instruments,
     examination techniques, and patinet/client self-report.
b.  Evaluate the patient's satisfaciton with the oral health care recieved and the oral health
     status achieved.
c.  Provide subsequent treatment or refferals based on evaluation findings.
d.  Develop and maintina a helath maintenance program.

 

 

PROFESSIONAL GROWTH AND DEVELOPMENT (PGD)

 

PGD.1

Identify career options within health care, industry, education, and reserach and evaluate the feasibility of pursuing dental hygiene opportunities.

PGD.2

Access  professional and community networks to pursue career, educational and professional goals.